The Adventures of Emrys: The Litter Box Fiasco

Well, I took Emrys to the vet to figure out why she was peeing on my bed… and it’s a behavioral issue. It just goes to show that no matter how well we know our pets, they can still surprise and leave us wondering what’s going on in their little heads.

I got Em almost a year and a half ago, and from the very beginning, she slept with me in the bed at night. I have a small apartment, true to the NYC lifestyle, so my room has always been her room. It’s where her food is, it’s where her litter box is, and it’s where we sleep at night. I always knew that I wanted her shut in the room with me at night. And she never had an issue with it, because I trained her to be ok with it from the very first night. But now, suddenly, she’s peeing in my bed (and still using her litter box at the same time, so I knew it wasn’t an issue with her litter or the location of her box). Nothing in the apartment has changed, she’s on the same routine she’s always been on, she has no medical problems causing this behavior, she has the same litter I’ve always bought for you, she gets loads of love and attention. She just got it in her head all of a sudden that it’s ok to use the bathroom on my bed.

So, this week I’ll share with you the steps I’m taking to stop this behavioral issue! And I’ll be sure to keep you guys updated on how they work for me and Emrys!

Step 1) Block the pet from the area she is peeing. Unfortunately, for me, this is not possible. My apartment is very small and I have a lot of roommates who wouldn’t want her litter box in the living area, and there’s no other place to move her food and litter in the apartment apart from my room. So, this is where we get steps 2-5.

Step 2) Purchase zero odor and spray it anywhere the cat has peed outside of her box. Even after we clean the sheets (or whatever the cat peed on), the ammonia smell still remains. We may not be able to smell it anymore, but the cat still can. And it will make them much more likely to pee in that same spot again, since it already smells like her pee. Zero odor removes that ammonia smell so there’s no trace of the cat pee left.

Step 3) Purchase a litter attractant and sprinkle it in the litter box. This will draw the cat to the litter box even more and encourage them to the litter box instead of going somewhere else.

Step 4) Keep the litter box super clean. Scoop it 1-2 times a day, and be sure to change the litter completely at least once a week.

Step 5) Place a small bowl of food where the cat is peeing outside of the litter box. In my case, I’m leaving a small bowl of food and treats on the bed, so that she will view the bed as a place to sleep and eat, not pee. Cats won’t pee where they eat.

Never scold a cat for peeing outside of the litter box unless you catch them in the act. If they do it while you’re at work and you come home to find the mess, then scold them, they will be confused and might start to fear you and act out more. Also, reward your cat when you see them using the litter box. Give them lots of praise and a treat.

Hopefully, all of these steps will be effective for Emrys! I have no idea why she’s started peeing on the bed, as she’s never done it before, but fingers crossed these steps help… I’m not sure what I’d do to stop the behavior if these things don’t work… Wish me luck!

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